On August 4, 2017 the British Columbia government announced its intention to re-instate the BC Human Rights Commission. Disbanded in 2002 in favour of a direct-access model, the new Human Rights Commission will reflect a period of consultation with the public, stakeholders, and experts.

According to British Columbia Premier John Horgan, the purpose of re-instating the Commission is to “create a more-inclusive and just society, where we work together to eliminate inequality and prevent discrimination on the basis of race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.”

The current Human Rights Tribunal addresses complaints of discrimination; however, absent a complaint the Human Rights Tribunal lacks a mandate to act.  The Commission appears to be intended to address this apparent gap, and will likely take a more proactive role. The period of consultation appears to be set for one year, with legislation anticipated in September 2018.

The government press release may be accessed here.